Just to be clear: I just asked my vet if I could drop off a urine sample for microscopic analysis ($40!). I had also already determined he had a normal TPR - which I also relayed to the vet. I didn't ask for medication. I figured that I would find out what the results were before I took the next step - which, in my mind, was to bring the dog in for sterile collection of urine if the results indicated bacteria. I know that the sample I brought in was not a sterile sample.(Believe me, I know sterile technique after spending a decade or more of my life working at a tissue culture hood for 4-6 hours a day.) I have had a dog in the past who did not respond to the 'usual' antibiotic for clearing a UTI, and required a sterile sample to be sent out for bacterial identification (and subsequent Clavamox). As a result, I am sensitive to the need for culturing.
Also, the pee behavior in the house wasn't exactly what I had noticed as a prior behavior with a UTI. But since I know that not all behavior/symptoms are textbook and like to get a jump on any infection/disease, I will (if I think necessary) try to do any testing or get a check-up sooner rather than later.
Of course, I didn't see any evidence of inappropriate urination the day after I brought the sample in. (I guess I was a worry-wart.) And the household has continued clean to this day.
I am probably not the ideal client since I do not run to the vet for every little thing. I worked for over 2 decades as a research scientist, going on 2 decades with a herd of livestock for which I do vaccinations, worming, microchipping, taking blood samples, intubating, etc. and 4 decades of dog and cat ownership. I often question the what and why of any treaments the vet wants to do. I was quite spoiled by my large animal vet who would provide me with wormers, antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, mild tranqs, etc. as I needed them without having to examine every animal. But that was a relationship of trust that required several years to develop. She could trust I wasn't going to do something stupid.
Julie Poudrier wrote "As for the OP, she said her dog had been recently seen, so all the comments about people who don't take their dogs in regularly don't really apply here. I understand the argument that the vet may still need hands on, but I'd be willing to bet that had the urinalysis shown nothing remarkable, Jovi would have taken her dog in for follow up. I don't expect my vet to diagnose over the phone, but I also try to have a good relationship and good communication with my vet so that when I do call with a question/concern he may well be willing to discuss it with me without actually seeing the dog at that moment." I agree with this outlook. [But the sample was negative, and I did not follow-up with a visit because the inappropriate urination stopped. If it had not, he would have been at the vet's post-haste.]
Part of the problem may have been the vet on duty (not my 'normal' vet). I had one visit with her and ended up with a huge vet bill. My older dog (8.5 years at the time) was acting a little 'off'. Not the energy he normally had and although he was eating all his food, it wasn't with the gusto he usually displayed. Was this a sign of aging or was it ehrlichia? I have noticed that ehrlichia can have very, very subtle signs. I brought him in for testing for TBDs. During the exam, the vet was suggesting the symptoms could represent this or that so she felt that we should take blood for a blood panel and CBC and then suggested an Xray would be a good idea. ( I now forget her logic for the Xray.) So off she goes with Torque to the 'back' for sample collection and testing. After a very long time (I think the total visit was about 3 hours.), she came back with the dog and results. Excellent blood work and nothing abnormal on X-rays. Then I asked her about the results of the 4DX test (TBD test) - which was my original request - and she had never bothered to do it!!! Bang head on wall. Another 1/2 hour for that test - and yes, he had ehrlichia. If I had insisted she start with the 4DX test, and wait on the additional diagnostics until we had the results of that test, I could have save a lot of time and $$.
I don't begrudge the fees the vet charges, but at least use some common sense and don't overdo the testing/treatments.